Apologies for wandering off and leaving you. I trust you all sorted a beverage, maybe raided the cookie jar? Good!

Things continue to go from busy to slack to what-the-hell-went-wrong! as we muddle along between houses.

But mostly, things get done. And more things will be crossed off the list as we move into cooler weather. I’ve made a tentative start in the garden. Well, I say tentative, but what I mean is a brute force assault on some horrendous morning glory and corky passion vine. Both nice enough on their home turf, but a nuisance here!

And there is what looks like an avocado tree beside the deck! It will have to be removed as it threatens one of the shade sails. We had them repaired and when we re-hung them I could see that the avocado would poke another hole in a sail! But the repairs will see them through many years of tropic sun and rain.

And, still on house-y and garden-y things. ..A week ago, there was a cracking thunderstorm. At midnight. Of course! I checked windows and all was okay. But we did have a totally unexpected gush of water in the room which will be the office/study. I threw an armful of bath towels on the floor ( just as well the floor is tiled !!) The Man scrambled up a ladder and cleared the gutter above the doorway. But still water poured in, via an air con. !!! Whisky. Tango. Foxtrot. How did water get in there??!! That unit was, fortunately, not running and is now turned off and unplugged. And we are waiting on a roofing wallah. With a stack of dry towels, just in case…

But, while all the drama was unfolding, The Man pulled a PVC cover away from the wall where the electric cables run to the air con. And look what we found, sheltering from the deluge!

There were three, but one hopped away. I put the other two into a dish and released them in the garden, under the leaves of a big cardamom. (And we stuffed a scrunched-up newspaper (with a picture of the current Prime Minister!) into the space, in case the froggies returned!)

And while we are on the subject of gardens… the people who bought our former house have decided they want lawns. Chain saws and excavators and brute force have removed EVERYTHING except a cycad along the side garden.

But it’s no longer my garden. Moving on…

Here’s a frog, happy with his/her cardamom home…

I’ll try to get back soon with scintillating stories…


I’m not making as much headway as I’d like, but I am getting a few more bits and pieces for the garden. Most will have to be potted-up and kept alive (one hopes!) until the cooler weather. I have scattered a few seeds of things like nasturtiums and escholtzia californica California poppy, and I’m going to bite the bullet and sow some sunflowers. Those of you who have Dark Arts forces on your side are asked, ever so nicely, to use your forces against vandal predation. The vandals in this case would be the Sulphur Crested Cockatoos, which decimated my only other attempt to grow sunflowers.

The Swamp Orchid flowers withered eventually and I’ve cut the stems, to propagate more.


One of the hibiscus already planted is a pretty thing…soft apricot colour and double-flowered.

And a dwarf Heleconia we brought down in the wheelbarrow. I think it is Little Jamaica.

And the jury’s still out on this chap. Maybe when it’s more advanced…best guess is Regelia.Don’t quote me!

And still we are battling weeds, like this, Dolichos. Not sure which one it is.

But, drum roll, please… we seem to be winning against the Sensitive Weed,http://Mimosa pudica In fact, The Man has done such great job there are no pics to show you! I expect a bare foot will tell us if any more *&**%$#! have sprouted!

Oh! We have a passion fruit. Yes, singular.But still more flowers to come and I’ve cleared the rubbishy dirt and stones, given it some TLC, water and coffee grounds and have hope.

That ginormous Eucalyptus torelliana in the front yard is seething with birds and bees.The noisiest by far are the Rainbow Lorikeets, but every so often they shut up and I hear, though cannot see, other birds up there.

Now, I must get some shoes on and go up the road to feed a neighbour’s cat. I might take a camera…

Forest of the damned.

Damned palm seedlings, that is. Foxtail palm, Wodyetia bifurcata. A lovely, lush thing, but rather too generous with its seeds. Ripening to a rich orange, about golf ball size, they hang on the tree for ages, not unlike a 5kg bag of mandarins and are a good food source for bats, possums and some birds.

Then, the few hundred or so that are left drop to the ground, germinate and away we go again.

That’s not grass! It’s hundreds of foxy seedlings! All this rain we’ve had are having has given everything a boost and I spent some time this morning pulling out handfulls of these. Lovely trees in the right place, but this yard does not have the space for so many. Not so long ago, foxies were at the centre of a scandal.

I also pulled handfulls of Cobblers’ Pegs Bidens pilosa, a nasty thing whose seed awns are not only a fecund nuisance, they can be a menace in animal fur or woolen clothing. The unseen corner over the back fence is choked with them; I’ll have to be extra vigilant when the wind blows from the south.

And then, my back having had enough bending, I straightened up and took a camera for a walk…

The Allamanda can’t seem to stop! Daffodils are out of the question here, but I glory in the matching yellow and similar fragrance. And that’s about the colour of our walls, too!

And the rain has been kind to the Gloriosa, allowing another flush before it goes to sleep…

An un-named bromeliad, bought at a school fair, years ago.

Two of our Anthuriums…I rather like the purple.

I’ll leave you with the Soursop (two that we can see, but possibly another higher up the tree).